Arthur P. Rawlings
Published 9:12 am Tuesday, August 11, 2020
COURTLAND — Arthur Pope Rawlings, 72, passed away on Aug. 9, 2020, surrounded by his loving family.
Art was born on Feb. 3, 1948, in Dunn, North Carolina, to the late Novella “Nody” Pope Rawlings and Sen. William Vincent Rawlings. He was raised in Capron and a lifelong resident of Southampton County.
Art was a graduate of Southampton High School in Courtland. After high school, he attended Ferrum Jr. College and transferred to Virginia Tech, where he began his lifelong support of the university. He attended all but one home football game for over 40 years and was a member of the Golden Hokie Club. Throughout these years, he was known as “Hokie Dad” by all. The corner spot of Lot 3 was noted as the gathering place for his friends and children’s college friends as he hosted his famous home game tailgates. No tailgate was complete without the Marching Virginians joining and playing the “Hokie Pokie.” Annual Rawlings vacations were always determined by the VT bowl location as Art planned numerous bowl trips from the east to west coast for his family and friends.
Art greatly enjoyed his years of developing Land Management Inc., Lake Chesdin and various land developments with his business partner and dear friend, S.V. Camp III.
He was a member of the Capron United Methodist Church and a faithful attendee of Wrightsville United Methodist Church at Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina. Art was also a former member of the Capron Ruritan Club.
Having a passion and love for golf, Art was active for over 30 years with the Cypress Cove Country Club Men’s Golf Association, serving as chairman of the association for many of those years. He is remembered for planning and orchestrating numerous member/guest golf tournaments held at the club. He served as president of the country club for six years. He was known by his fellow golfers as “Dad,” planning their annual golfing trips throughout the years.
More than anything, Art was a man who lived for his family. A loving, caring, compassionate grandfather, “Big Art” enjoyed time with his grandchildren boating and beaching, attending surfing lessons, sporting events, dance recitals, church and school activities. Big Art was their biggest fan, always showing encouragement and support.
One of his greatest enjoyments was spending time at his beloved “Nody’s Place,” at Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina. He enjoyed the ocean breeze on the porch while shagging in the moonlight to beach music with his favorite dance partner, De De and his dear friends. He loved teaching his grandchildren the “Big Art Shuffle” and all of his dance moves.
Art is survived by his wife of 48 years, Doris Cox Rawlings; son, William Vincent Rawlings II (Jennifer) of Virginia Beach; daughter, Sara Vivian Levesque (Christopher) of Wilmington, North Carolina; four grandchildren, Vincent Robert and Liam Pope Rawlings; William Arthur and Vivian Elizabeth Levesque; sisters, Elizabeth Willey (Robert) of Alexandria and Vincent Dyer (Raymond) of Winston Salem, North Carolina; sister-in-law, Sue Francis of King, North Carolina; brother-in-law, Roger Bryant of Christiansburg, Virginia; and 11 nieces and nephews.
In memory of Art, donations may be made to Capron United Methodist Church, 23118 Main St., Capron, VA 23829; and Wrightsville United Methodist Church, 4 Live Oak Drive, Wrightsville Beach, NC 28480.
A private service will be held and a celebration of Art’s life will take place at a later date.